At a distance of 75 km from Lonavala, 102 km from Mumbai, 143 km from Pune, Alibaug or Alibag is a coastal town and a municipal council in Raigad district of Maharashtra. It is the headquarters of the Raigad district and is a popular beach destination. Alibaug is one of the top Maharashtra tourist places situated near Mumbai.
It is surrounded by sea on three sides, it is very commonly known as the 'Goa' of Maharashtra. The town was founded in the 17th century by Kanhoji Angre who was the naval chief during the reign of Shivaji Maharaj. Earlier, Alibaug was known as Kolaba, attributed to the Kolaba Fort which was built by Shivaji in 1680 CE. Legend has it that a wealthy Muslim named Ali owned many plantations hence the town derived its name Alibag.
Alibaug has witnessed many historic battles including the one at Varsoli between Siddis and Kanhoji Angre. Another was aggression on Kolaba Fort by the English and Portuguese jointly, which they lost. Next was the battle of Chaul between the British and Sakhoji Angre which Sakhoji won and held them captive in Kolaba Fort. Alibag and its surrounding villages are the historic hinterlands of Bene Israeli Jews. There is a synagogue in the 'Israel Ali' area of the town.
Located in the Konkan region of Maharashtra, Alibaug is well known for its beautiful beaches and ancient forts. Among the various Alibaug tourist places, Alibaug Beach, Kihim Beach, Akshi Beach, Mandwa Beach, Kashid Beach, Varsoli Beach, Nagaon Beach and Murud Beach are the popular beaches in Alibaug. Visitors can also visit Khanderi Fort, Kolaba Fort, Murud -Janjira Fort, Vikram Vinayak Temple or Birla Temple, Magnetic Observatory and Korlai Fort.